2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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iotar__
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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No, it wasn't the best chance to beat Hamilton, again he had his best chance when he was on the same tyre strategy towards the end of first stint - that's a fact not speculation, he closed the gap and had an attempt. Why would there be a gap of 2-3 seconds after first stint, outlap that faster? Even if that's the case what counts is speed over the whole stint + DRS + better tyres towards the end of the stint - just like it was the case before the first pitstop. Plus some fuel saving advantage(?).

OK let's say Rosberg is driving for Red Bull, no full freedom of strategy (they can't come in together) everything else the same, he's quicker, he was in the first stint, despite saving fuel and 2 more laps, agreed? Would they ever go for a strategy when he loses contact until five laps (7-10?) before the end when cars are lighter and DRS is less efficient (is this still the case in 2014?)? I don't see it ever happening.

If strategies are similar there are opportunities before, during and after pitstop (twice), outlap, inlap, advantage towards the end of the stint - especially on a two-stopper with some tyre advantage, mistake in the pitstop, driver mistake, pressure, affecting Hamilton's pace all the time. Instead 4 laps into the race they start running different strategies with similar overall speed and some unspecified tyre advantage in the last 5-7 laps.
Why the assumption that leading driver gets some better strategy call? Unless they want to come at the same time, what's the problem, assuming they let them race and not pretend to? Fine he pits next lap, is close enough if really faster over the whole stint, repeat of situation from the first pitstop.
Edit: one more option, some overtaking (like Perez - Hulkenberg for example), lapping of slower cars involved, it happened before (Alonso, Vettel) - another opportunity compared to "alternative" strategy,

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thomin
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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It was communicated that Rosberg chose his strategy on his own. Maybe the gamble for a safety car was exactly the main motivator. Then again, if the simulations showed that he could get to Hamilton with soft tires, then he would have had a better chance of overtaking him, given that they otherwise had the same material. Also, remember that Rosberg had much more fuel in hand compared to Hamilton. Had it not been for the safety car, this may very well have been an important factor.

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iotar__
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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OK checked it - even if it's 3 seconds per stop (1 lap earlier stop, similar for Perez-Hulk) it's not much more than lost time in the first stint and he was able to close that gap. Still worth IMO.

And it would have been be different had they pitted him one lap earlier - one lap less of lost time (new-old tyres), softs instead of mediums, one lap fresher tyres - not much but it adds up.

Edit: http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2014/04/09/2 ... ranscript/
18th lap: - Warn him, that was not on! - Copy Nico, we need you to go to strat-10, you cannot use strat-six.
What's strat 6 and 10?
I'll answer myself, from later:
49: Nico Rosberg When you’re ready to attack, it will be strat-6 and you can use the overtake.
51 Lewis Hamilton Peter Bonnington Is Nico on strat 6?
- Affirm, we’re just mirroring what they’re doing. - OK, so let’s go back strat-3 when you can. We’re just going to mirror them.

lebesset
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Emerson.F wrote:
lebesset wrote:seems that kimi was driving a damaged car almost througout the weekend after hitting the kerb [ that was later removed ?] in FP1 and ferrari didn't detect all the damage ; must have been quite bad for them to stop their tests today

http://www.bbc.com/sport/0/formula1/26961345

looks like it will take a miracle for kimi to get a bit of luck
He did have quite a bump on T4. :( I feel bad for Kimi and Fred with that Ferrari.

Ps: for all the bickering going on upstairs :roll:
http://i.imgur.com/ffsxv7R.jpg
alonso's car wasn't damaged so he had an advantage on kimi almost all the weekend
to the optimist a glass is half full ; to the pessimist a glass is half empty ; to the F1 engineer the glass is twice as big as it needs to be

lebesset
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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iotar__ wrote:No, it wasn't the best chance to beat Hamilton, again he had his best chance when he was on the same tyre strategy towards the end of first stint - that's a fact not speculation, he closed the gap and had an attempt. Why would there be a gap of 2-3 seconds after first stint, outlap that faster? Even if that's the case what counts is speed over the whole stint + DRS + better tyres towards the end of the stint - just like it was the case before the first pitstop. Plus some fuel saving advantage(?).

OK let's say Rosberg is driving for Red Bull, no full freedom of strategy (they can't come in together) everything else the same, he's quicker, he was in the first stint, despite saving fuel and 2 more laps, agreed? Would they ever go for a strategy when he loses contact until five laps (7-10?) before the end when cars are lighter and DRS is less efficient (is this still the case in 2014?)? I don't see it ever happening.

If strategies are similar there are opportunities before, during and after pitstop (twice), outlap, inlap, advantage towards the end of the stint - especially on a two-stopper with some tyre advantage, mistake in the pitstop, driver mistake, pressure, affecting Hamilton's pace all the time. Instead 4 laps into the race they start running different strategies with similar overall speed and some unspecified tyre advantage in the last 5-7 laps.
Why the assumption that leading driver gets some better strategy call? Unless they want to come at the same time, what's the problem, assuming they let them race and not pretend to? Fine he pits next lap, is close enough if really faster over the whole stint, repeat of situation from the first pitstop.
Edit: one more option, some overtaking (like Perez - Hulkenberg for example), lapping of slower cars involved, it happened before (Alonso, Vettel) - another opportunity compared to "alternative" strategy,
truth of the matter is that on the same strategy he needs to stay ahead of hamilton to have a chance of beating him , and he knows it ; hence the alternative strategy ; last year the DRS might have done it with the faster car , but with the improvement in acceleration it is no longer the case
to the optimist a glass is half full ; to the pessimist a glass is half empty ; to the F1 engineer the glass is twice as big as it needs to be

dans79
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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lebesset wrote: last year the DRS might have done it with the faster car , but with the improvement in acceleration it is no longer the case
This I can agree with. I think this year ERS can negate DRS if used properly on some tracks.
161 97 92 6

Sevach
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Phil wrote:Stradivarius,

Where do you conclude that, and I quote - "To do this, he would have needed to catch Hamilton by almost 0.7 s per lap. The tires would only give him around 0.3 s per lap. So Rosberg would have had to make up an extra 0.4 seconds per lap himself." - that the tires would only give him around 0.3 sec per lap? Everything I've seen points to the fact that they were significantly quicker. If you are concluding 0.3.sec per lap by comparing their 2nd stint (Ham on softs, Ros on meds), I think this not quite correct, as both were on different strategies - one driver (Ros) getting most out of the mediums and the other (Ham) trying to prolong the life of his tyres to keep his last stint short. The 0.3sec you see that made Hamilton go from ~6sec to ~9.5sec was due to that compromise at the fuel load / weight of the car. I think it's safe to say that on a lighter car with less than 15 laps to go and no fuel saving, that the pace difference between tyres would be quite significantly larger than what we witnessed in the middle stint.

I also disagree with the notion that the 'quickest strategy using 1 tire' is to do 3 equally long stints. The car is the heaviest at the start and the lightest at the end. Because of this, the latteral force and strain on the tyres is proportionally higher at the beginning of the race than it is at the end. The quickest strategy therefore would be varying lengths of stint - perhaps 15, 19, 23 (just making an educated guess here). Fuel level would change these numbers slightly if the driver is 'fuel saving / coasting and lifting' at the beginning but 'on it' at the end of it. This also doesn't cover the 'rubbering in' of the track, but that would only support the thesis that the stints can potentially become longer towards the end (less strain on the tires).

Coming back to strategy - yes, Rosberg did lose 5-6 seconds by pitting 2 laps later. The question is however, was that entirely due to his tires reaching the "cliff" or did he perhaps make a driver error as well? And when exactly were those 5-6 seconds messured? After Rosberg completed his outlap or before? I'm asking because the mediums were likely the harder tyre to get up to temperature - so an outlap would be slower than Hamilton's one. If there was no safety car and Hamilton would need to do an outlap on mediums as well (not under safety-car), he would have had the same disadvantage of having to switch on his tyres. This was effectively nullfied given the safety-car situation and he had a few laps to put heat into them. I would think the 5-6 seconds you are seeing here are slightly exaggerated for this reason.

Given the radio call on lap 7 where Tony Ross told Nico to remember he was on an alternative strategy makes me assume he was always going to pit those 2 laps later - and go for a middle stint on medium tyres. This was also before Rosberg battled with Hamilton for pit-stop-priority and position, so at that point, the team didn't know how close the fight might end up. So I really don't think the strategy was 'split' to avoid battling.

I do think that had Rosberg opted to go for softs in his second stint, perhaps a lap later (as you are suggesting) that the gap would still be at 2-3 seconds. Rosberg would then need to make up that time on equal tires and attempt a pass. Not being able to successfully pull this off, would effectively mean that Hamilton - again - would get priority on last stint pitstop, pulling ahead again. Rosberg might have been quicker in the opening stint on used softs (remember; tyres from Q2), so it's not absolute certainty that he would be as much quicker on new softs (hypothetical 2nd stint) and quicker on mediums on the last stint (hypothetical 3rd stint) on a much lighter car with no fuel-saving-modes.

I really do think the 'alternative' strategy (which IMO was clearly dicussed before the race) gave him the best chance on beating Lewis - or at the very least, not a distinct disadvantage.
The alternative strategy wasn't a bad call in itself, it's execution was a bit lacking however imo.

No reason to wait 2 laps to pit, all this accomplished was awarding Lewis Hamilton an extra 3s lead.
And given that Nico did 21 laps in stint 1 (on his used soft) i don't understand why he was still on primes at the time of the safety car, doing a long stint 2 only gave Hamilton the chance to do more laps on the faster tyre.

Nico's engineer should've called for pit about 20 laps to the end and forced Hamilton to react.

Of course the SC played it right into Rosberg's hands, but without it i don't think his strategy was gonna work due to small errors.

beelsebob
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Sevach wrote:The alternative strategy wasn't a bad call in itself, it's execution was a bit lacking however imo.

No reason to wait 2 laps to pit, all this accomplished was awarding Lewis Hamilton an extra 3s lead.
And given that Nico did 21 laps in stint 1 (on his used soft) i don't understand why he was still on primes at the time of the safety car, doing a long stint 2 only gave Hamilton the chance to do more laps on the faster tyre.

Nico's engineer should've called for pit about 20 laps to the end and forced Hamilton to react.

Of course the SC played it right into Rosberg's hands, but without it i don't think his strategy was gonna work due to small errors.
The reason you do it like this is to make sure that the final stint is short, and hence that you're able to drive hard and fast, happy in the knowledge that the tyres don't have to last. There's no point doing this strategy if you then have to conserve tyres in the final stint.

Sevach
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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beelsebob wrote: The reason you do it like this is to make sure that the final stint is short, and hence that you're able to drive hard and fast, happy in the knowledge that the tyres don't have to last. There's no point doing this strategy if you then have to conserve tyres in the final stint.

He wasn't gonna make 10s in 15 laps either...
Watching the race i could see that they needed to make a move and fast, each lap they didn't make the call Rosberg's job was becoming more and more unlikely.

beelsebob
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Sevach wrote:
beelsebob wrote: The reason you do it like this is to make sure that the final stint is short, and hence that you're able to drive hard and fast, happy in the knowledge that the tyres don't have to last. There's no point doing this strategy if you then have to conserve tyres in the final stint.
He wasn't gonna make 10s in 15 laps either...
Watching the race i could see that they needed to make a move and fast, each lap they didn't make the call Rosberg's job was becoming more and more unlikely.
They reconned that the softer tyres were worth 0.65 a lap. Hamilton was lapping on average 0.3 quicker, which means that Rosberg's better setup was worth 0.35 a lap. That implies that Rosberg would have lapped on average a second a lap quicker. So in fact, he would have arrived behind Hamilton, in DRS range with 3 laps to go – just in time to make a final charge.

e30ernest
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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I'm not sure if this was posted before, but it gives some insight why Mercedes' strategy unfolded as such for both drivers:

http://www1.skysports.com/f1/news/22058 ... r-strategy

Stradivarius
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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I decided to try and analyse the lap times and reevaluate my view on Rosberg's strategy. Here are the lap times of Rosberg around the time of his first stop:

Code: Select all

Rosberg                 Hamilton           Gap
17 1:41.455             17 1:41.802        0.550
18 1:42.587             18 1:42.621        0.516
19 1:43.965             19 P 1:46.545     -2.064
20 1:41.442             20 1:59.311      -19.933
21 P 1:44.439           21 1:39.765      -15.259
22 2:01.019             22 1:39.666        6.094
23 1:39.886             23 1:40.357        5.623
24 1:40.178             24 1:39.743        6.058

Taken from www.fia.com
Rosberg's and Hamiltons' lap 19 should give us a pretty good indication on how much you loose on the inlap as a result of slowing down in the pitlane. It seems to be roughly 2.5 seconds. Rosberg's lap 20 and 21 should give a similar indication, except that his tires were probably falling off lap by lap. At the end of a stint you will use up your tires and the performance will often drop quite rapidly. His lap time went up by 3 seconds on his inlap, so maybe he lost the extra 0.5 seconds as a result of the tires being used up. Looking at other drivers this seems to fit quite well, so I think 2.5 seconds is a reasonable estimate on the time lost in pit lane on the inlap. In that case we can compare Rosberg' lap 21 to Hamilton's lap 21 and we see that he looses 4.674 s, which is then 2.174 s more than the 2.5 seconds resulting from the inlap.

At the end of lap 22, Hamilton's lead was up to 6.094 s. If we subtract the 2.174 seconds that Rosberg lost on lap 21, we are left with 3.920 s that Rosberg lost on laps 20 and 22. Hamilton's outlap on softs was 1:59.311 and Rosberg's outlap on mediums was 2:01.019. This is a difference of 1.708 s, which may well be the result of the medium tires taking longer to heat up. If we subtract the 1.708 s from 3.920 s we are left with 2.212 s. Of course, comparing the outlaps directly isn't totally accurate, as the fuel load decreases and the track rubbers in (maybe not that significant from lap 20 to lap 22). So probably Rosberg a bit lost more on the outlap than 1.708 s and less than 2.212 s on lap 20. The fuel load difference should be about 3.5 kg based on a 100 kg fuel load for 57 laps. This is maybe worth a tenth of second.

So Phil is right, the outlap accounts for, let's say almost 2 seconds of the gap between Hamilton and Rosberg after 22 laps, which means that he only lost around 2 seconds or slightly less per lap by staying out. The 2 seconds he lost on warming up the medium tires can be seen as an investement that he would get back on the final stint.

For the record, the time Hamilton spent in the pit lane was 24.687 s and the time Rosberg spent in the pit lane was 24.851 s, so there was no significant difference there. 0.164 s is not really significant in this estimate. By the way, I chose to include all decimals for accountability.

Having said this, I still find it unlikely that Rosberg's strategy was based on giving him the best opportunities to beat Hamilton. There must be a reason why Hamilton didn't run mediums on his second stint and I believe that the reason most likely is that soft-soft-medium was the fastest strategy. It may be that they wanted to gamble on a safety car for Rosberg, but seing how close Rosberg came to pass Hamilton at the end of the first stint, I can't help but thinking that he would have been better off running softs on the second stint as well and force Hamilton to use his tyres slightly more than he needed to himself, and apply the pressure at the end of the stint. However, I see a very good reason why the Mercedes team would want to avoid close wheel to wheel racing between their drivers in a race where this was the greatest risk of loosing a 1-2 finish. When they give orders over the team radio that they want both cars to finish, I find it unlikely that they don't think about this when deciding the strategies as well.

Shakeman
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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The race is just as thrilling when you read the pit radio transcripts. Would've be great to hear all the pit conversations between the Merc drivers and team during the race.

May also shed some light on strategies being employed with energy usage.

http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2014/04/09/2 ... ranscript/

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Phil
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Stradivarius,

+1 - thanks for doing the analysis! I agree. I'm not sure if I heard this on Sky or the RTL feed when I watched the race, but I think Toto (?) said sometime after the race that the OPO strategy was, accoarding to their estimate, about 0.5sec slower than the OOP Lewis was on.

If I were in Nico's shoes, I think I would have probably prefered to be on the same strategy as you suggest, but I think some part of the thinking on putting Nico on the alternative strategy was that his engineers felt he was genuinly quicker and that if they could get him into clean-air, he wouldn't be slowed down by Lewis and could effectively end up with a bigger advantage at the end of the race when it would be Lewis on used mediums and him on used softs (by the time he'd close the gap).

There is one thing that I think kind of broke the strategy IMO:

- that being:
The medium tyre was quicker than they anticpiated. I'm not sure if this was conveyed through team radio or in one of the post-race interviews, but someone noted that Nico's pace was very good. Perhaps this was due to Lewis trying to maximize his strategy by using his 2nd stint softs wisely; instead of going all out and pulling a gap and destroying his tyres, he used them more wisely to slowly increase his gap 0.3sec per lap. Perhaps it's also a combination of Nico being quite strong on the medium that the speed differential wasn't higher.

The question then is - who benefits the most if the medium is quicker than their estimate? Nico who technically had a smaller gap to cover by the time he pitted for softs on his last stint, or Lewis, racing that medium tyre on a short last stint, light car and rubbered in track? IMO - probably the latter, which is why I think the OOP strategy probably was the better one.

What makes it tricky IMO is that these kind of strategies are always guestimates to a certain degree. The engineers didn't have the data available to know exactly how it might pan out - nor how well (or bad) the tires would perform. And to some degree, you can also say that copying Lewis's strategy would always mean that Rosberg would be in his dirty air - potentially putting a higher strain on his own tires assuming he couldn't pass - plus, not having pit priority would always mean he would have to make up the ground he loses when Lewis pits and gets the undercut. Mirroring this might be sometimes an advantage if you're not racing the identical car, but one of a different team, with different aero, qualities etc. But if you're racing the same car (sans some set-up differences), I guess it can be very difficult to beat it on the same grounds with the pit-stop disadvantage.

One other thing that I heard post-race, was Niki Lauda applauding Lewis. It seems, one of the crucial factors in Lewis securing his win and holding off Nico was that he was able to put that heat into his medium tyres. For one, he had the laps under the safety car to warm them up (and you can tell, just as the safety car came hin, Lewis was zick-zagging like crazy while Nico mostly remained straight and waited for him to floor it) and by driving extremely aggressive while holding off Nico. The quality in Lewis driving and agressive defensive positioning in taking back the lead etc makes me doubftful if Nico had any chance at all if we assume there hadn't been a safety car and they either mirrored each others strategy (OOP) or the alternative one. In hindsight, putting on pressure over the entire course of the GP probably would have been his best bet and hope Lewis cracks at some point.

Ironically, that safety car gave Nico the best scenario he could have hoped for during the race - him on fresh softs, Lewis on mediums and a nullfied gap.
Not for nothing, Rosberg's Championship is the only thing that lends credibility to Hamilton's recent success. Otherwise, he'd just be the guy who's had the best car. — bhall II
#Team44 supporter

komninosm
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Re: 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix

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So does anyone else think 3 seconds a lap is too much?
I mean I'm a Mercedes and a Hamilton fan, but it seems more than Red Bull even.